Chinese Medicine: What Exactly Is It?

Many of you, especially since you are reading this blog, may already be familiar with Chinese medicine. However, if you were to ask people off the street if they knew what Chinese medicine was, the vast majority will be entirely unfamiliar with what it is. Of those who have heard of it, most will have no idea what it is capable of. In my experience, the most common response is “That’s acupuncture, right?” Although that is the modality most people are aware of it is not the whole picture, nor is it even the biggest part of the picture.

More than just acupuncture…

Acupuncture could be considered the physical therapy of Chinese medicine, but traditional Chinese medicine is the diagnosis and treatment of systemic diseases. The power, strength, and magnitude of acupuncture resides in its ability to provide pain relief. When it is used correctly and thoughtfully, it appears to be nothing less than magic. Pain relief should be instantaneous! That is what people should expect from acupuncture. To make changes internally and metabolically, it is much more appropriate to treat using herbal medicine (and dare I say- more importantly with food, but that is for a later post).

Chinese medicine is a full form of medical care, with the exception of emergency medicine. The brilliance and foundation of Western medicine lies in emergency care and trauma and that they are very good at. Preventative and curative treatments are far from mainstream medicine’s strong suits. That is why Western and Eastern medicine combined have a symbiotic relationship, which should not be segregated. It is too bad that most western physicians don’t recognize Chinese medicine as a ‘valid’ form of care. Any medicine that has been around for 4,000 years should not be ignored.